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Taiwan organization calls for tighter supervision of dating apps

Xinhua | Updated: 2018-07-24 14:30

TAIPEI -- A child welfare organization in Taiwan has called for tighter supervision of dating apps to avoid potential harm to young people.

The Child Welfare League Foundation (CWLF) published a report Monday, showing that of the children it surveyed, 37.7 percent have used mobile dating applications to get to know strangers.

"There are three major potential dangers for children using dating apps: leaking of personal information, dangerous requests from strangers, and children leaving home to meet strangers in person," said Huang Yun-Hsuan, with the CWLF.

Huang said if children do not have a good relationship with their family, they might resort to meeting strangers online to seek connection.

"We have noticed a rise in the number of children leaving home in such cases," Huang said.

According to the report, dating apps have the loopholes in areas such as age limits, reporting mechanisms, and leaking locations due to the app's GPS function.

The organization called on the Taiwan administration to tighten supervision. It also asked dating app operators to strengthen self-discipline, while children should be taught to better protect themselves.

"Parents should communicate with their children more to avoid potential harm," Huang said.

The report was conducted among children aged between 12 and 17. It received 1,889 responses, 49.1 percent were junior high school students and the remainder senior high school students.

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